There has been widespread flooding and numerous roads have been closed across Hamilton, Herkimer, Warren and Essex counties, including the western slopes of the Champlain and Lake George Valleys. » Continue Reading.
Human disturbance is especially harmful to the state’s bat populations since the arrival of the disease known as white-nose syndrome, a fungus that has killed more than 90 percent of bats at hibernation sites in New York due to how closely bats congregate in caves during winter months.
Even a single, seemingly quiet visit to a cave can cause bats to temporarily increase their metabolism and expend significantly more energy than normal. » Continue Reading.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced that emerald ash borer (EAB) has been confirmed in two locations in Jefferson County. A sample collected from a tree in the city of Watertown on South Massey Street was positively identified by the Cornell University Insect Diagnostic Lab.
The sample was taken in cooperation with the City of Watertown Planning Department and Department of Public Works. A second location was confirmed in the village of Clayton. » Continue Reading.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is planning to amend state regulations and designations for protecting endangered and threatened species across the state. DEC’s proposal would remove 19 species from the state’s endangered and threatened species list.
The Eastern cougar is proposed for removal from the list, due to its extinction in New York State. The grey wolf would also be removed, and renamed simply wolf, signifying new understandings of that species based on recent DNA studies. » Continue Reading.
DEC Wildlife Staff is involved in a spruce grouse translocation project to help boost numbers of the state-endangered spruce grouse and to improve genetic diversity of the remaining population in New York.
To meet the goal of maintaining their population in NY over the next 100 years, wildlife staff believe they will need to release 250 adult individuals from outside populations into NY over the next five years and manage habitat at several sites. » Continue Reading.
On spring evenings, just before dark, I used to hear a faint drumroll coming from somewhere off in the wooded hills. It sounded to me like an old tractor starting up, although it seemed like an odd time for a farmer to start work.
I later learned that it was the drumming of a ruffed grouse. Not a partridge; this was Connecticut. Years later I lived in Maine, where my husband took up bird hunting: not for grouse, but for “partridge.”
They are the same bird, Bonasa umbellus. » Continue Reading.
The Club Camp is often mentioned as the first permanent structure built on Big Moose Lake. The word permanent is rather ironic because this hunting and fishing establishment had a relatively short history of just 28 years. Today the camp’s origins, visitors, and sad end seem largely forgotten.
According to Joseph F. Grady’s The Adirondacks: Fulton Chain-Big Moose Region (1933), the Club Camp was constructed in 1878 at the request of several sportsmen from New York City who had been spending summers on the lake in previous years.
At the time, Big Moose, near Old Forge, NY, was difficult to reach — the railroad would not arrive in the area until 1892. Before 1878, only lean-tos or shanties were available on Big Moose, notably that of businessman William “Billy” Dutton, which was built in 1876, and that of guide Jack Sheppard which was set up around the same time. » Continue Reading.
Where I live, autumn typically starts in late August, when pockets of red maples start to turn scarlet around the marshes and lakes. Uh oh. As they say in Westeros, “winter is coming.”
But not before we get to enjoy fall. Yes, a Northeastern autumn is a postcard cliché. Yes, the tour buses and land yachts full of leaf peepers clog the roads. But, really, who can blame them? No matter how many you’ve seen, fall in the Northeast is still one of nature’s most awesome spectacles.
And, so, so ephemeral. » Continue Reading.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and the Adirondack Lakes Survey Corporation (ALSC) have announced the confirmation of brook trout in Lake Colden in the Adirondack High Peaks.
Considered fishless for decades due to the negative effects of acid rain, the discovery of the brook trout population in Lake Colden is being attributed to improved water quality directly resulting from state and national standards to prevent the airborne pollutants that cause acid rain, notably sulfur dioxide. » Continue Reading.
The Whallonsburg Grange Lyceum has announced “Beneath the Surface: Salmon in the Boquet River,” a program on the return of landlocked Atlantic salmon to the Boquet River, set for Tuesday, October 15th, at 7:30 pm. This program is part of the Grange’s fall series “Hidden in Plain Sight.” » Continue Reading.
This week feels like fall proper. It’s gray, drizzly, 50s; the kind of weather that makes you realize you’d better batten down the house for winter.
We’re going to get to the first fire of the year in a moment, that pathetic, smoldering pile of hissing wood in your woodstove that you made such a big deal about. “Come here kids!” for the ceremonial lighting of the hearth, which turned into the ceremonial opening of the doors and windows to let the smoke out of the living room. (Write what you know, the English professors advise.)
But first let’s talk about the physiology of a tree. » Continue Reading.
The 2019 Salmon Festival has been set for Saturday, October 5th, at multiple locations in Richmond, Vermont. Family friendly, salmon based events will take place throughout the community from 9:30 am to 3:30 pm. » Continue Reading.
Growing up in a rural town, I was exposed to a lot of the wonders in nature through hunting. Specifically squirrel hunting, which is how many kids get their start.
I don’t do much anymore, but I try to get out a few times each autumn on those first cool days. With luck, I can put up enough squirrels for a deer camp stew in November, over which the people in camp can reminisce about being young. » Continue Reading.
While sampling in the LaPlatte River, students noticed what looked like rough black pebbles about the size and shape of well-worn pencil erasers.
I suppressed my mild distress as they started to discard the ‘pebbles;’ when sampling aquatic insects, I discard little. » Continue Reading.
A study published in the journal Science reveals that since 1970, bird populations in the United States and Canada have declined by 29 percent, or almost 3 billion birds, signaling what has been considered a widespread ecological crisis.
The results show tremendous losses across diverse groups of birds and habitats — from iconic songbirds such as meadowlarks to long-distance migrants such as swallows, and backyard birds such as sparrows. More research is needed to pinpoint primary causes for declines in individual species. » Continue Reading.